21 Oct :The auction of spectrum for third generation or 3G is likely to be completed by January 15, 2009, Communications and IT Minister A Raja said in New Delhi on Tuesday.
"The 3G auction would be completed by January 15 and the operators would have to pay up by January 31," Raja told reporters on the sidelines of a conference.
About the timeline for the auction he said, there is no change in that, unless the Finance Ministry voluntarily wanted to have some comments over the issue.
However, due to the festive season and Christmas holidays, there may be little bit of change in the timeline.
"But, there is neither delay nor we are pushing it", Raja said.
Earlier, the auction of 3G spectrum was scheduled to be completed by December-end.
The process got delayed as the auction it was entangled in numerous regulatory issues.
Finance Minister P Chidambaram had also expressed concern over delay in auction process for the 3G spectrum.
Earlier, Department of Telecommunications (DoT) had also hinted at reviewing the time schedule for auction amid anticipation that participation of foreign players would be less than expected in the wake of global financial crisis.
"I have to discuss it with the Finance Minister whether the financial condition is conducive for an auction," Raja had said.
However, asked whether the current market situation would effect the generation of revenue from the bidding process as expected by the government, he said, "If at all the Finance Ministry or the PMO feels there may be a little bit of jerk, we will continue discussions".
Earlier this month, DoT had selected Rothschild to conduct the auction of 3G and broadband wireless access spectrum.